What You Don’t Know About APIs Could Hurt Your Ability to Deliver Great Customer Experiences

What is the API Economy? Why not knowing about your APIs, could hurt your business? One of the issues is that the APIs you currently have may not be making that seamless, contextual transition in the ubiquitous channel / device world most customers live in daily. (Ubiquitous channel / device meaning customers don’t think about the channel or device they are going to use to interact with you- they just do.) This API issue can apply to many functional department’s software: Marketing, Advertising, Sales, Customer Service, Customer Success Management and can lead to the success or to the failure to meet customer expectations — i.e., to meet the brand’s promise, deliver products and services, as promised as, well as meet the business’s expectation on getting the interaction and engagement data so critical to knowing their customer’s behavioral patterns and creating mass systems of personalization, which has been promised by many a vendor.

With the enhanced capabilities of software and the automation of processes, transactions, and distribution across every industry and companies within those industries, the gap of effective APIs is widening.  APIs not only leverage software but also expose software interfaces to others. This includes, but is not limited to internal developers, partners, customers… and thus, APIs can help the brand get more information out of the interactions with their customers and also to work towards making interactions into engagements that are seamless.

The ability to making interactions into engagements that are seamless is really important  in the multi-channel, multi-device, omni-channel world – which doesn’t — in reality — always exist like the marketing by some vendors says it does. And with mobile driving ubiquitous channel and device engagement necessities, as customers don’t premeditate when and what channel or device they will reach out to you on or which device or channel they will continue that interaction on, businesses must move from the idea of multi-channel, multi-device, omni-channel world into the world of ubiquitous customer engagement and make sure their APIs are delivering all they possibly can.

As I was doing a briefing call with 3scale, as they put it, we are in The API Economy. It’s a new economy, that is beginning to boom as brands realize what that the software they bought doesn’t exactly work they way they thought it did / could / would.  And there are many things that companies need to learn in order to succeed.  To help ease the API process, 3scale, the San Francisco and Barcelona-based API Management solutions provider, released a comprehensive eBook about APIs entitled “Winning in the API Economy. The book is available for download free.

The ebook features commentary and insights from 3scale’s management team and a roadmap for using APIs to advance a business.  The book is designed for any business leader who is in charge of software strategy, or is contributing to it, and is looking to bring their organization gains through efficiency and new market opportunities. Many of today’s internal and external IT challenges have common roots in the need for a sound API strategy for supporting software systems. This can range from the evolution of platform strategies to accommodating mobile distribution channels.

This book will appeal to leaders across multiple industries as software is becoming an indispensable part of almost every process, and software’s interfaces have the potential to drive a great deal of positive change,” said Steve Willmott, CEO of 3scale and author of “Winning in the API Economy.  With the API industry expanding so quickly, it is important for organizations to understand the impact that APIs can have on their business and learn about how they can use APIs to grow their bottom line. ‘Winning in the API Economy helps make the world of APIs accessible through easy-to-understand examples and strategies.

The eBook combines real-world case studies with clear explanations to give the reader an ‘API roadmap’ to guide them into this rapidly changing world. It is especially important to understand what you should be expecting from APIs and the differences between what you are getting and what you should be getting from them.

It is possible that software can drive new business opportunities presented by APIs and lead to success and innovation. But this again, may require that IT and the functional business units collaborate so that the external customer experiences turn into systems of engagement and mass personalization at scale.

@drnatalie

VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research Covering Customer Facing Applications To Create Great Customer Experiences

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